Education is a fundamental right of all, therefore the process of establishing, administering and maintaining an academic institute is significant to both its students and research departments. Senior managers within the academic field are highly authoritative, requiring management experience, specific academic skills and research experience.
Academic research is the activity carried out by students and researchers from a specific academic field investigating and evaluating a particular aspect of their research topic. Their findings are represented in a scientifically written format, resulting ideally in an article being published in a credited research journal, a book or a PHD thesis. Academic research is intense, stimulating and rewarding. However, to acquire a managerial or administrative position in this field requires a substantial amount of administrative knowledge to ensure that the research project will be a success.
Academic research management requires a set of skills, for example, topic affiliation, time management, quality management, project acquisition, project management, leadership and team motivational skills. Academic research management is an extremely demanding field as it not only requires managerial expertise but also a clear understanding of academia and its research environment.
There has been a growth in the area of Academic Institutional Assessment and Evaluation over the past decades. Academic institutions are now about to start, or in the process of or at the final stage of the procedure of academic institutional assessment and evaluation. Assessment includes data gathering, analysis of the data, reporting or presentation of the data and the direction to be followed in order to achieve the goals and objectives of the institute under the present institute’s policies. All of the needs or necessities of an institute to evaluate itself including the academic programs, projects, plans, strategies, budget and policies constitute an important part of the criteria of academic assessment and evaluations. In short, academic institutional assessment and evaluation require an explicit expertise in academic management and Research project management as well asa keen understanding of the academic environment.
The entire process of running a successful organisation from planning to managing available resources comes under the term Institutional Management in higher education. Amongst other tasks a senior academic manager has to create, monitor and maintain the institute’s strategic plan in order to increase the institution’s success and proper functioning.
Institutional management and research management can experience severe problems when not planned correctly. There can e.g. be numerous problems associated with the balancing of existing projects and the acquisition of new ones resulting in serious complications concerning budgets, personnel, work load and deadlines. Time management, an awareness of available personnel, resources and finance are crucial keys to maintain a balanced, regimented research project and institute. Another very important key in institutional and research management is the senior manager’s network and his/her personal skills. To achieve the best results within a research project as well as within an institution the importance of understanding how the project is managed, who the best person is to manage it, the right timing of acquisition, execution and completion, and the precise location is unequivocal.
Considering the amount of possible variable complications of completing a successful research project and of running a successful institution it is advisable to consult experience academic senior managers with a wide network of colleagues and peers as well as an extensive list of publications, conferences, workshops. One example illustrating this can be found on Jeannine Beeken’s site. The site offers information on senior academic project management, coordination of international/European projects and acquisition of research projects. For further information please visit Jeannine Beeken’s contact page.